Men’s Step 0 – Day 1

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why i haven't been able to stop myself from acting out after i've committed not to. i need support, accountability, a brotherhood.
also stopping doesn't apply only to viewing pornography. but sex with self. need to stop all acting out behaviors.
why? I'm been fooling myself into thinking porn is the issue not "all acting out behaviors"

my shame diminishes as i see i am not alone. also i draw strength from others who have been where i am and are now where i want to be. courage to open up and be honest and be accepted for my flaws not rejected.

my therapist, my wife, my brother, Randy

i haven't done any yet

I think it means God respects our freedom to choose. God will not force us to do anything or Stop. However when willing make the decision to Stop. God will step in and support us. by stopping are start to create room in our lives for God. space that wasn't there before because my addiction filled that space.

The part about sources of lust, because I wonder if I’ve gotten rid of all of mine

I can’t isolate and ignore mh feelings any more—I need to be with others and share mh feelings with then

Guys with a year or more of sobriety each day, and other guys from mh meetings

I haven’t written down or really even set any boundaries—I would like to do that.

First I have to surrender—I think this means giving up my right to lust, in general and in this particular moment in this particular way, to put down the option to do it and back away from it.

I need to surrender lust in all forms. Masturbating thinking of a white wall is still a drug.

To be able to surrender your feelings.

Other members of my SAA, SA and SAL groups.

Leaving phone outside bedroom and bathroom. Keeping office door open, reporting slips within 12 hours to wife and sponsor.

After we stop and surrendered, God helps us keep our focus on our recovery and the strength to maintain our sobriety.

The first part that I have underlined and stuck out to me again, was the commitment to stop feeding lust. I have a tool of surrender to use when I am tempted to lust to cope with emotions. But sometimes I just allow myself a "little" lust. or just for a quick minute. This mindset is wrong and it allows me to put the poison of lust into my mind and body. The other part that stuck out to me was the idea of stopping in all areas. I can't stop lusting if I'm going to allow myself to hold onto resentment.

It helps to keep me humble and honest. It helps to show me what can be achieved. Participating in a group/fellowship is how I bring myself to see what God can do with others just like me.

I text an accountability partner each day. He is another member in group that has more sobriety then I do and helps me to see patterns and sometimes points out the good work I've done.

I need to think more about this.

I can say I'm never going to do it again but the truth is I always go back to it. However, I have found that I can't control this, God can help me surrender the power it has over me and then I have more power to chose.

The need to be engaged in the fellowship. I am generally not very excited about committing to be in a group of any nature, yet alone of this nature. I need to surrender my reluctance to fully accept that I need to be engaged in this fellowship.

It provides me with three things I cannot get anywhere else. 1) It humbles me. I am a human being with similar characteristics and foibles to those in the fellowship. 2) The fellowship is a support network for me to tap into if I need a listening ear, a reminder of my commitment to the program and/or a helping hand.

I don't have a sponsor yet. My commitment is to work towards getting a temporary sponsor in place over the course of the next two weeks.

I will work with Josh to put blockers on my phone so that I cannot access the websites that I used.

Sobriety is table stakes for being on the recovery pathway. In order to invite God into our recovery process we need to surrender to Him those things that we are not able to handle on our own. Surrendering is the most important tool I have learned to tap into during this, my current, recovery path. In the past, I tried to overcome my addiction on my own. Now I recognize that I am not able to progress without God as a partner.

The main thing that stuck out to me was the mention about the "loner". Because of the area where I live, I don't have an active group that I can attend and I have had to rely on zoom and phone meetings as my only real opportunity to regularly get to a meeting. I have used this as an excuse a lot of the time to ignore the promises I have made to get to a meeting once a week and criticize the quality of any of these meetings. Its a lot easier to zone out or "phone it in" in a phone meeting. I've tried my best to work past this and treat a phone/zoom meeting as if I was sitting shoulder to shoulder to these people and know that they need this as much as I do and I should act like it. I didn't get into addiction by some complete absence of my attention and active participation, and I don't expect to get out of it and recover without action either.

Because it brings to light all the ways I have been feeling isolated that I never would have admitted or known if I didn't encounter others who experienced and fought through the same things that I had been for years.

My friend Miles I have been doing accountability partnership with. I also call a couple of guys I have meet recently in my current zoom meeting.

One boundary I need to keep in place in my recovery is the way I behave at work. I have often told myself it is up to me to recall who I am when I walk in the door and if I choose to not bring my values and to surrender when I need to, no one else is going to do it for me. If I choose to let my guard down and take on hits of lust or be lacking in caution with what I look at or how I access technology then I will be opening myself up to slips and relapses that I was able to prevent.

To me it recalls what I believe about grace in my life. I know that God's grace is constantly available to me, but only if I am open and ask Him for it. He cannot force it upon me or pull me away from my sin. He can do all things, but he wants me to turn towards Him and offer my suffering and my struggles and sin up to Him. Only then am I free and He pours out grace without limit.

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I have to get out of my own way and not try to take control. I pray daily for help and then I go about my day as if I were in charge. That approach never ends well. I like the saying "Let go and let God" However, I rarely truly let go. My mind tends to easily wander, my thoughts turn to fantasy. I need to constantly feed my soul with spiritual food and shun that which is not uplifting. I need to nurture my sobriety in order to maintain my sobriety. If i am not bearing fruit then I am withering. I am either advancing or slipping backwards. I need to stop the nonsense and SURRENDER. God will then take over. I need to practice this minute by minute.

Several, but this one first:
"There is an unwritten step underlying all twelve. Call it Step Zero. "We participated in the fellowship of the program." No one seems able to stay sober and progress in recovery without it..."
It struck me because I've always been so independent, self-sufficient, etc.

Because those who have gone before have found that no one is able to stay sober without it. Connection with others seems to be vital, and I have always been quite isolated, introverted, and disconnected.

I made the goal this week to make at least one phone call to someone on the phone list. My first SAL meeting was only day before yesterday so I don't have a sponsor yet.

No self-gratification even if it's just the physical act with no thoughts involved.
No arousing images of women; online, paper, or however.
When I encounter inappropriate things that I have not intentionally sought, I choose to quickly turn away, whatever that entails.

That I stop, and then trust God to guide me and help me stay stopped. Rather than praying again that he would take it from me finally. Also that it's not enough to be stopped from the behaviors; I then work with God to continue to get better at recognizing and not practicing lust in any of its forms.

Now we stop; and then in our surrender, the power of God becomes effective in us.
I have to surrender my will to act out and follow through in order for God to do his part.

It gets me out of my head. It allows me to be raw and vulnerable and expose my secrets and still feel loved and understood.

Harrison, Jeremy, Joe, Thomas

Stay off news sites like yahoo or google.
Don’t “research” movies or shows that are known to be inappropriate.
Stay off the Internet all together if I am struggling.
No movies with nudity
No sexually explicit songs
No browsing google images

That I have to lay my will to act out at Gods feet.

The need to surrender first, and trust God to not let us start again.

It holds you accountable and takes the secrecy of the addiction in the open

Spouse, kids ( in a respective way )

Phone and location blocks on all eltronic devices.

We first must take action to have the power of god with us.

We can't do it alone. We have to reach out to others for support, connection.

For support and connection. We all help and support each other.

My sponsor, others in the 12-step group.

I won't go certain places, meet with females, one on one, keep my phone visible to my spouse at all times, allow my spouse to go through my phone whenever she wants to.

God will help us as we help ourselves. Stopping shows our commitment to overcome.

Fellowship is crucial to recovery.
The measure of my commitment is the measure of my recovery.
There can be no from the obsession while still practicing the obsession.
I have to stop feeding lust to be in recovery.
The program doesn't tell us how to shows us how to keep from starting again.

This is a group that I can be transparent with. I am learning honesty by having this group that I can tell anything and still be in a safe place. They have different perspectives and since they have experienced the same struggles as I have, this often gives my additional knowledge and wisdom for connecting with God.

I will reach out to my sponsor, Bret, Kelly, and Steven.

The 3rd second surrender rule. Symbols of giving the temptation/trigger to God. A travel plan.

I have seen this in my own life! First I had to stop and turn to God. He was there waiting and he gives me a changed heart - a healed heart- and brings peace that I haven't known in my addiction.

I need to cut it out and work with others so that I can be free

It is hearing from others and learning from their experiences

My dad and brother

Phone calls every morning, using phone if only have a purpose, no taking tech alone. No watching porn in house

It is recognizing that he has the power to help me heal

Progressive victory over lust

The support is essential to keep one accountable and engaged.

My wife

No triggers. Open office.

The power of God grows from within and fills our being. But we must surrender.

When it says that there can be no recovery without a fellowship program. This made me think of those individuals that I know struggle with this, but claim to be 'doing fine' though I know that they are not in a recovery or fellowship program. I may need to follow up with some of them to see how they are doing and to tell them about these programs.

It gives a support network that cares. A therapist doesn't really care, not in the same way, and a spouse cannot relate in the same way as fellow members. Talking to a spouse, even one as incredibly patient and accepting as mine, is damaging over time, and you cannot be fully supported by the one that you are damaging with every relapse.

I have a marco polo group, and I have a number of contacts that I cycle through from the SAL phone list.

I have controls on my devices and home internet, I have committed to call my sponsor in the middle of the night if I feel the urge to act out, and I have limited the use of applications and media that can be triggering.

We first have to chose to stop, take some action to commit to stopping, then we turn the rest (being 95%) over to the Lord and allow him to help us grow incrementally as we strive to perfect our efforts.

My wife often tells me that I am "Checked out." My previous wife also said similar things. It is impactful that this was something I often disagreed but could be true and me just not seeing this.

I need to have more acountability to my actions and start taking my recovery serious.

Spouse

NA

That god has to be apart of the process to recovery.

We can’t do this alone without the support of a group. Also being a part of the group is important . The structure and being involved.

To tell my story and get support from others who are struggling as well.

My therapist on thursdays and couples counseling with my wife weekly.

Have not completed this set.

Once a line in the sand is drawn to stop, then we need to surrender . Once we do this the power of god is with us and we need to lean into him to remain sober.

Getting involved. I can stop the addictive behavior, I can show up physically to meetings, but I need to get involved to make this work. Get involved with the group. Socially, serviceably, and be a support to anyone that needs that help.

Cause you have to do the work. You have to do the work. Thinking about it doesn't make change. Telling yourself you are better than the behaviour without following it up with action is just naive. Until you are willing to dive in and participate you will never (I will never) face the addiction and overcome.

Michael, Band of Brothers Group Me.

I need to put some in place.
- No sexually charged media. Movies, books, internet sites
- No lusting.. staring longer than 2 seconds and letting my mind wander
- No Flirting. Keep work contacts professional, church contacts cordial and extended family contacts friendly but not personal

That I have to surrender. I can't just stop.. or just expect the power of God to take over. I need to surrender and I need to then ask for his mercy and his power to take effect in my heart and my body.

Basically, you can't do recovery on your own. You NEED a fellowship of brethren to help you along and to help them along. I've tried to do this on my own for 40+ years and obviously it's been a epic fail. Nothing has changed in 40 years. I'm just starting recovery and I'm almost 53 years old. I am grateful I found all these new resources and especially the ones that I can come together with other struggling men.

As the book says, when you attend a meeting (fellowship) you are showing up and saying, " I want to stop. I need help."

I will call someone on the phone list once a week.

I'm not really sure about this one. I don't really have people that I need to set boundaries with. I'm my own worst enemy. One boundary I have set for myself is to not bring my phone in the bathroom. Not sure if that qualifies as a boundary?

Instead of waiting for God or some other person to help us or make up stop, we stop and then plead for God to help us keep sober. We stop. We take the 1st step and then let God take over our lives from there.

Basically, you can't do recovery on your own. You NEED a fellowship of brethren to help you along and to help them along. I've tried to do this on my own for 40+ years and obviously it's been a epic fail. Nothing has changed in 40 years. I'm just starting recovery and I'm almost 53 years old. I am grateful I found all these new resources and especially the ones that I can come together with other struggling men.

Hearing others stories has been a huge part of beginning my recovery. Fellowship means coming out of isolation. That is a HUGE step forward. As the book says, coming out of ourselves. Sharing literally drains the poison that we have bottled up for so many years.

2 other group members.

I'm going to have to think and pray about this over the next week.

We make the decision to stop. Not asking someone else or God to make us stop. We make a conscious decision to stop and surrender. By doing so, we use the power of God that has always been there, we just had to ask for it. We had to surrender our addiction, anger, hurt, loneliness, shame, etc. Lay it all at the feet of the Savior.

1. The situation Steven discussed when basically he & his wife saw a provocatively dressed woman at the same time & how each were triggered. His wife on the trauma side & he expressed how shame came over him, the desire to withdraw, & escape. I relate to this because of situations my wife & I have experienced very similar situations & the time & effort to overcome these triggers has been hours of painful & hurtful discussions.

The fellowship of the program to me means, that I am not alone. This is an addiction of the worst kind. I can only wish I had listened to President Gordon B. Hinckley years ago when he in his every calm and reassuring voice said, to "avoid pornography like the plague...it is the most vial disease on earth" & basically will kill you. Speaking with others helps me to moderate these feelings of shame and guilt I have for all of the years of poor decisions and lies I have told.

I have been reaching out to other brothers that attend the same SAL meetings as I do that have years of sobriety under their belts...seeking to tap into their knowledge, skills, and abilities.

I have not shared with my sponsor yet...but will, my boundaries to achieve "progress victory over lust". In my daily readings in the morning I incorporate a daily study book/journal called, "Lust Free Living" by Douglas Weiss, Phd. & other daily readings to educate, re-wire my brain to feel, think, & act differently than I have ever done. First, "get of 3 streets early"...if I know a woman is close-by, walking/exercising down a cart path in my neighborhood, standing in line at a grocery store, I don't look. If I do meet someone in public, I look from the chin-up. No rubber necking, objectifying, or looking at body parts. Then as I do these things daily, I discuss how my day went with my wife in the evening check-in we have before we say our prayers and go to bed for the night.

Feeling the power that comes from being in the present to me...being mindful and aware of my situation that I am always on-guard. Satan will always tempt me, it is how I control my obsession to look and lust that is 100% controllable. I just have to be confident, keep a prayer in my heart and mind at all times, & stay focused on my tendency to look around and look at women. Just keep my mind focused on pleasing God, myself, and respecting my wife. See all women as daughters of God, respect them, honor my wife and the commitment I have made to her to cling unto her and none else.

Regular participation is recovery is what keeps us in our recovery.
attending meetings regularly gets us out of our own heads.
Group doesn't show us how to stop but how to keep from starting again.

This allowed myself to see a little more of the group and 12 step purposes.

Allows us to trust and communicate with others, to forget ourselves.
This allows us to recover while we help others.

I'm working on a sponsor again. I reach out to other friends who are struggling with the same addictions.

My boundaries- The phone is not near the bed. no endlessly searching the internet. stay off the phone while I'm doing something else. Keep working on the small things, prayers, studying of scripture and positive messages, working on learning more about any topic, recovery steps and learning, attending meetings regularly.

As we surrender our addiction an stop from acting out, we reach for the Lord to help us and give us strength to keep from starting again.

Meeting in a group has been one way to help provide sobriety

It helps us get outside ourselves

Other’s in my group

No tv alone
No scanning on phone
Three second rule

Surrendering gets all the hits out and keeps getting them out

That without participation in the fellowship of meetings there seems to be no recovery. Why?- explanation’s in the wording

Because up to this point I haven’t been able to stay sober. I want to know how to stay stopped, or from how to keep starting again

I have no sponsor and no one identified to reach out to. I guess my brother

No social media. Phone restrictions. No contact order with previous woman

I have no idea. Bc when I’ve stopped in the past, I don’t feel the power of God becoming effective in me has been expressed if I still resort back

I left my book at work and was unable to read it, but one huge thing is how vital it is to cut out all forms of lust. I cannot be sober in one area while indulging in another. There are zero acceptable forms of lust. Relapse is not part of recovery.

I need to get outside of myself. I need to see others and learn from them. I need to have a commitment to follow. I need to serve others. I need to feel seen and heard.

I don't yet have a sponsor and I must find one. I am also committed to reporting daily to my wife and regularly to Pres. Holman.

I will not go onto Facebook, Instagram, or Tiktok for any reason. I will only go on YouTube with strict limits and I won't allow myself to watch any video other than the one that brought me there in the first place. I have deleted all social media, streaming, and gaming apps from my phone and will never download them again. I will attend recovery meetings twice weekly.

Without sobriety there is no recovery. Sobriety means abandoning lust in all its forms. Relapse is not a part of recovery, it is part of the addiction cycle. I have to determine that I will never allow lust of any kind back into my life.